Who are you? And what is the purpose of your existence in this world? In the world of information, greater things can be discovered by those who are willing to explore the significance of life. But there has not been any information, greater than discovering oneself, which positions one to control, rather than being controlled. Jesus attributed the discovery of oneself to possessing faith.
“O unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy here to me.” Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed from that moment (Matthew 17:17-18 NIV).
Jesus’ lamentation implies that failure to heal the child was a result of the inability to appreciate the inherent power of His disciples. Addressing them as of perverse generation suggests that their inherent stupendous intellectual capabilities had been eroded. The disciples posed a question, as to why they had failed to perform what appeared as not complicated to Jesus.
…. “Because you have so little faith, I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:20 NIV).
The words of Jesus can never be doubted by those who truly believe in Him. Failure to link with Jesus’ abilities does not remove the truthfulness of Jesus’ statement. Whether one believes it or not, one is inherent with unlimited powers. The inability to achieve anything stems from the question of identity.
Understanding is a byproduct of faith. Conversely, faith is a byproduct of understanding. The greatest enemy of humanity is pretending to know what one doesn’t know. This includes what goes in our educational system. One is awarded a doctorate, after having quoted other people’s theses; but without him having fully understood the subject in question.
However, it is impossible for one to have faith in something that one does not fully understand. We have to exhaust the significance of being created in God’s image. What does that mean? It is impossible for any person existing in physical form to imagine being in God’s image.
Except for Jesus, having come directly from Heaven, there is no other human who can claim to have seen God. But, if created in God’s image, what other image would one look for, except in oneself? Humans are physical and yet God, in whose image humans were created, is not physical. This is what complicates matters, leading to misunderstanding.
One has to dig deeper into one’s spirituality, for nurturing a sense of God-consciousness. God is the creator of all things; therefore, nothing is impossible with a person created in God’s image. What God is capable of doing, the person created in God’s image would also be capable of handling.
This depicts a matter of common sense. If nothing is impossible with God, therefore, nothing should be impossible with people created in God’s image. One’s incapability to do what God is capable of doing is a result of being of a perverse generation, according to Jesus’ insinuation.
That depicts a condition of existing in slavery, which invites faithlessness. One could list as many reasons for failure to reach the required level of faith, aiming at reaching God’s capabilities. A person created in God’s image cannot fail to attain Godly attributes. Failure is a result of doubting one’s capabilities.
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for” (Hebrews 11:1-2 NIV).
One cannot have confidence in what one is uncertain about, and one cannot have the assurance of what is not guaranteed. However, one goes to bed, convinced of the sun that would rise from the East, tomorrow morning. The assurance would not be observable, but projecting faith. One might die, having not seen the rising sun, but nothing would be anticipated to stop the sunrise.
Jesus lambasted His disciples for being of a perverse generation. This describes a corrupt and wayward generation. The personality of Jesus represented what was original, rather than what had been corrupted. Hence, the incorruptible Jesus was able to easily do what the disciples failed to achieve.
Jesus projected the standard of human originality. There is no need to look elsewhere when desiring to know the original identity. The next question would be how to reach the standard of originality as represented in Jesus.
There is a Shona musical chorus that used to be sung among Christian denominations. “Hakuna wakaita sa Jesu. Ndatenderera kwese Kwese, Hakuna akaita saye.” (There is no one, like Jesus. There is no one like Him. I went around but could not find anyone like Him).
That piece of musical chorus states the indisputable certainty. What is created in God’s image can only be found in Jesus. For anyone desiring to acquire the condition of God’s image, one cannot look elsewhere, except looking at Jesus. The landmark discovery of this secret was revealed in the identity of Jesus:
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock, I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you lose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Then he ordered his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah(Matthew 16:13-20 NIV).
This crafted the foundation for discovering humanity’s originality. If Jesus was the Christ, Son of the Living God, it follows that humanity comprises God’s children. If that is the case, why does humanity languish in failures and desperation? Of course, nothing can be achieved by a person who doubts being God’s child. This is where faith is called for.
It is common for most people to state that nothing is impossible with God. But, that is a condition applicable to humanity, as well. Yet the same humanity doubts all things being possible with them. The source of their doubt is disbelieving that they were created in God’s image.
They can read through Scriptural passages, affirming to that reality, but remain mystified. The physical condition assumes that it is impossible to survive without the physical body. Hence, the limitations affecting the physical body are assumed to also affect the spiritual condition.
Nevertheless, after a person would have achieved the spiritual condition, faith becomes unnecessary. There would be no longer any promise of what would have not been realized. Such a person knows that he knows. He would be confident of what he/she fully understands to be true.
The first question, regarding a person’s identity, is answered in Jesus. If Jesus is the Son of God, the same applies to that person’s identity. That leaves one without any need to fumble around with useless information. A person, who gets information via somebody else, cannot be certain of what he/she assumes to know.
To put this to the test, one can approach Professors of Theology, on some passage of Scripture. One might find those guys to be very evasive. Most of them are honest enough to leave everything hanging in uncertainty. They may convince one of how impossible it is to understand God’s mysteries.
Those theologians can help one to appreciate some doctrinal errors, which might make the questioner feel humanly wiser. But the questioner would remain with problems of uncertainty. This is different from taking everything from the original. Understanding cannot be difficult when observing what is being studied from the original source.
The moment one hears of quotations from some renowned Professors, about the assumed correct doctrine, wise people avoid such informants like a virus. True information comes from the original source, and the original source in Christianity is Jesus Christ. Everything else is a fallacy.
What normally causes people to consult Theologians is the inability to comprehend Jesus’ teachings. For instance, why does Jesus say lack of faith is a sign of being of a perverse generation? The assumption to know what one does not know is the most dangerous conjecture in Christianity. It should always be a question of whether the person knows or the person doesn’t know.
Failure to understand is often a result of not reading Scriptures in their contexts. Another cause of misunderstanding is leaving misunderstood words, undefined correctly. But the most common error is ignoring the aspect of being created in God’s image.
Just by exhausting the understanding of being created in God’s image, the entire Bible becomes easy to understand. There would be no need to theorize about the Trinity and other such hallucinations. The identity of an individual crashes all forms of misunderstanding.
“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it”(John 14:12-14 NIV).
Shall we now ask a candid question? Do readers of this Scriptural passage fully understand what it says? It may be difficult to comprehend what goes on in the minds of readers. Do they really appreciate God-consciousness or do they just pretend to know? How can a mere man do greater things than were performed by Jesus?
“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them”(John 14:15-21 NIV).
For instance, how does one separate the person being referred to, from the Trinity? A wise person cannot leave such Scriptures misunderstood and pretend to be in sync with Christianity. This is where some people would consult the supposedly knowledgeable charlatans.
However, information about Christianity cannot be found in any other source, except Jesus Christ. Other people could help the person to understand, but everything has to be in agreement with God’s word. Rather than rely on others, the person would be better off, praying, and asking God’s revelation of the significance of the Scripture in question.
Another piece of unsolicited information is that whoever helps one to understand some Scripture is not the authority. God can use anyone to disseminate information, without conferring authority on that person. The one to whom the message is not intended, might not understand.
The one, with who God is spiritually communicating will always understand without problems. Spiritual communication to the person concerned is done through anyone, whether written or in person. But that information would not have anything to do with the informant.
The person with who God would be communicating bears no problem with misunderstanding. Whereas, those not intended, might ridicule, finding no sense, in that information. What one does after receiving the message is up to one and the person’s God. But the person would have achieved freedom.
The last question, to do with one’s purpose of existence, can be answered, at the point of receiving the Holy Spirit. That person would have reached the destination of being with the Father. This process is accurately illustrated in the parable of the Prodigal Son. See [The prodigal Son parable and the mystery of Man].
Andrew Masuku is the author of Dimensions of a New Civilization, laying down standards for uplifting Zimbabwe from the current state of economic depression into a model for other nations worldwide. A decaying tree provides an opportunity for a blossoming sprout. Written from a Christian perspective, the book is a product of inspiration, bringing relief to those having witnessed the strings of unworkable solutions––leading to the current economic and social decay. Most Zimbabweans should find the book as a long-awaited providential oasis of hope, in a simple conversational tone.
The Print copy is now available at Amazon.com for $13.99